I have been to many a school and met many teachers who excel at teaching students to read well. But... few of their students are readers - people who love books, seek out and choose great books, talk about books like they are friends and read for the sheer joy of reading.
Fostering a love of books and reading and growing readers is the magic that great teachers strive for. And yes, it can seem like magic when it happens if we don't understand the steps needed to guide students there and the things we, inadvertently, do that hinder the process.
Let's face it, there are thousands of people and computer programs that can teach someone to read. It takes special combination of dedication and skill with a big dose of heart to grow readers. With practice using these top 10 tips and my Cheat Sheet for accomplishing the critical #1 tip, you can master the art of consistently growing readers!
10. Read aloud (with great enjoyment) to your students every day.
9. Connect reading to writing (and other subjects) every chance you get using Mentor Texts.
8. Dedicate time for students to read books they chose every day.
7. Teach reading skills through your read alouds and individual student reading.
6. Nix the taking turns reading aloud (round robin reading) from textbooks or assigned reading in class.
5. Ditch the reading logs.
4. Model great reading with guest readers and storytellers.
3. Use intentional language as you teach. “As readers, we… “ The assumption is we are all readers here.
2. Do book clubs, book talks, book discussions and/or book tastings.
1. Match books to students. This one is easier said than done. Don't worry. I've got you covered!
Get your Free Cheat Sheet with Steps for Matching Books to Students. (includes all 10 tips and the Cheat Sheet)